LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN, TN (June 4, 2010)--It’s a day of which golfers dare dream.
One they would want to savor for a lifetime, re-telling the myriad of highlights to their kids and grandkids, and referencing in their hall of fame acceptance speech.
In the culmination of a stellar week of golf, Ole Miss redshirt junior Ashley Lance posted a career-high two eagles, along with eight birdies, on the way to victory at Women’s Southern Amateur Golf Championship on the Lookout Mountain Golf Club course.
In the 36-hole final, which ended at the 28th hole, Lance from Franklin, Tenn. defeated University of Arkansas’ Corinna Rees, 9-and-8.
Lance gave warning of things to come as she opened with an eagle putt on the Par-5, No. 1 in the morning round, then used birdies on Nos. 7-8-10-14-16 to be 4-under after 18 and had a trio of birdies in the afternoon round and then put two hands securely on her biggest career win with an impressive 30-foot eagle put on No. 10 (28th hole).
The two-time high school state champion from Franklin Road Academy, is the first Tennessee champion in 16 years – Sarah Lebrun Ingram (Nashville) won back-to-back titles in 1993-94 – and only the fourth in the past five decades following Mrs. Sam Furrow (Knoxville) in 1978 and Judy Eller Street (Old Hickory) who claimed the her second trophy in 1960.
Current Lookout Mountain resident Betty Rowland Probasco – the 1955 champion – was on hand during the morning round.
Lance made a statement early with eagle-par on Nos. 1 & 2 for a 2-up lead, but Rees answered by winning the next three holes to gain a 1-up lead.
But Rees would not win another hole until her birdie putt at No. 15 put her 4-down.
After Rees won at No. 5, Lance then won six of the next 10 holes for a 5-up advantage after 14. Lance claimed Nos. 7-8-10-11-13-14, including birdies at 7-8-10.
Lance answered the Rees birdie at 15 with a birdie of her own at 16 to push it to 5-under.
The 17th was halved and Rees, a 20-year-old from Pebble Beach, Calif., won at 18 for the 4-hole lead for Lance.
Both players birdied No. 1, followed by Lance’s string of birdies at Nos. 3-5-7 sandwiched around a par on 6 for an 8-hole lead.
Lance, who had previously never made two eagles on the same day, eagled the 28th hole (No. 10) to close it out.
More Par 5s: Lance probably wished there were more par 5s on the course as she was 9-under on par 5s today.
Route to the Title: Lance was the championship flight second seed after posting a 72 in stroke play … In five matches, she disposed of Alex Rankin (Anderson (S.C.) Community College), 1-up, Haley Cothran (Soddy Daisy High School), 4-and-2, Brooke Pancake (Alabama), in 19 holes (Lance was 3-down after 10), defending U.S. Senior Amateur champ Carolyn Creekmore, 3-and-2, and Corinna Rees (Arkansas), 9-and-8 in 28 holes.
What’s Next: Lance will play in the U.S. Amateur Qualifier (top 10 qualify for the national event in a one day stroke play event) in Roswell, Ga. … will also compete in the Tennessee Women’s Amateur (June 21-25) in Cleveland.